There are only 6,000 words in Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story, a brilliant gothic horror published in 1892 and one that has spawned so much other art in so many different mediums. Based on Gilman’s own experience of being hospitalised after suffering post-natal depression, it tells of a woman separated from her baby by her physician husband and incarcerated in an attic room with yellow wallpaper. It’s a rich story, full of ambiguities, and the appeal here is in the inter-disciplinary team—Stephanie Mohr, Aurélia Thiérrée, and Fukiko Takase—assembled to reimagine this feminist classic for the stage in a production that employs theatre, dance, video, and sound.
Combining theatre, dance, live video and sound, this genre-defying production is directed by Stephanie Mohr, and is performed by acclaimed actress and theatre maker Aurélia Thierrée (Bells and Spells) and Japanese dancer and choreographer Fukiko Takase (See Art Through The Body). This world premiere unites three outstanding Coronet Theatre artists to collaborate, combining the studio and auditorium spaces for the first time. Written in 1892, Gilman’s pioneering piece of feminist literature was considered one of the earliest examples of gothic horror. A young mother confined in room in a remote country estate by her physician husband, slowly becomes obsessed with the yellow wallpaper in the room he has chosen for her. In her isolation she sees a woman trapped in the patterns that she must attempt to free. This moving, dark and hallucinatory story explores identity and the physical and mental prisons we inhabit.